Closer Look: SilverStone EB01-E
As with the companion Ensemble series EB-03 headphone amplifier, the EB01-E arrives in a box that makes no mention of detailed audio specifications. Instead, the packaging clearly indicates which integrated circuits are used in the design. The EB01–E uses the XMOS XS1 TQ128 USB IC which features asynchronous operation for improved audio conversion.
Also referenced are the Texas Instruments PCM1798 digital to analog converter and NE5532 op amp for optimal analog output.
The SilverStone EB01-E Is designed with the classic Ensemble series look, which features a curvy brushed aluminium enclosure supported by four oversize standoffs. The enclosure is available in either a black or silver finish, which provides an aesthetic choice when matching the EB01-E to your existing stereo equipment.
Recessed blue LEDs provide a status indication for power and audio content. Once initialized, the power light will remain on while the play indicator only activates when audio is streaming to the device.
All audio and USB connections are located on the back of the unit.
The EB01–E has inputs for USB audio as well as coaxial or optical digital audio. A small push button switch on the back of the unit allows the active input to be selected by sequentially pressing the button. Three status LEDs above the inputs provide an indication of which input is currently active.
When the EB01-E is first connected to a computer system, a standard USB audio driver will attempt to load. To take full advantage of this hardware though, it is necessary to install the driver using the mini CD included with the package.
Installation proceeds quickly and smoothly and once completed, access to the full range of supported audio formats is available in the control panel.